One of the worst ways to corrupt an electronic music track is to throw in police sirens — not only is this anxiety-inducing for people listening and driving in cars, but it’s also downright unpleasant. Yet this is precisely what Zedd chose to do to his hit single, “Clarity,” at the Fox Theater on Tuesday.
In fact, police sirens can be used to characterize the overall feel of the show — loud, blaring and incongruous.
Zedd opened with hot tracks from other EDM artists, most notably Calvin Harris’ “I Need Your Love” and Avicii’s “Wake Me Up.” Sadly, the crowd was whipped into more of a frenzy over other artists’ tracks than his own.
Like most EDM artists playing live, Zedd is obliged to remix popular stuff — unfortunately, the 24-year-old Russian-German DJ has not yet mastered the art of a remix nor the practice of dropping the bass.
I’m no music producer, and I certainly am not a dancer, but even I could tell that there was something rhythmically off and discordant between the build-up of most of his songs and the beat after the bass dropped.
Both “Stay the Night” and “Clarity,” two of the few tracks Zedd is known for, were examples of this. As mentioned before, in the second round of “Clarity,” Zedd chose to throw in police sirens in the background, which was the most awful thing he could do to remix his track. If that weren’t enough, the lights were coordinated to match the sirens, with blue and red flashing all over the small space that is the Fox. I don’t know what drove Zedd to make this particular artistic decision, but if there’s something he should know by now, it’s that the last thing people want to be reminded of at a rave is the impending danger of being caught by the 5-0.
Thankfully, just as police sirens do, the show passed by briefly, lasting less than two hours.
Lynn Yu is the arts columnist. Contact her at [email protected].